About the Book
Brother Half Angel is the leader of a secret new church military order, dedicated to helping Christians under attack around the world. In this book, the first in the Brother Half Angel series, he is dispatched urgently to China, where an underground seminary is under siege from fanatical sword-wielding members of a local cult who still pay homage to the bloodthirsty extremists who tried to expel all foreigners from China in the nineteenth century.
The following is a short excerpt from the book (continued from Empower to Prosper blog). Scroll to the end to learn how to read more, and also to learn how you can buy the book for a special price and with the chance to win a $200 Amazon gift voucher.
With reluctance Daniel followed his wife out of the room, into the narrow corridor. “What’s it about?”
“I’ve no idea. No idea at all. Brother Yoon just said it’s urgent. I was to get you at once.”
“I hope Uncle Ling’s not expecting the police. Does he look upset? Agitated?”
“I don’t know. I didn’t see him. But you know that he always looks agitated.”
It was true. Their director carried a look of perpetual, nervous despair on his skinny, lined face. Daniel thought he sometimes resembled that famous painting “The Scream.” It was as if he dreamed beautiful dreams every single night about the return of Jesus, only to wake up the next morning to be informed that it had been postponed once again and he would have to carry on with all the burdens of his regular daily life.
The corridor was dank and for some reason smelled of cats, though Daniel doubted that cats had ever lived here. Rats were a more likely explanation, and possibly even farm animals. At the end of the corridor they walked through a doorway and then across a covered pathway to a separate building. Uncle Ling’s office, which doubled as another classroom, was here. They entered.
The director, seated at his desk in a corner of the confined room, did not look up. Brother Yoon, a Korean from Seoul, and the only other teacher at the seminary, was already present. Daniel and Jenny joined him, forming a small semi-circle around the desk. The only member of the seminary not in attendance was Yoon’s Chinese wife Lin, who worked during the day at a factory in town.
Daniel looked at Ling. He appeared to be engrossed in some kind of document, his mouth hanging open, his eyes wide.
Daniel sometimes struggled to believe that this cadaverous man in his seventies was one of the saints of the Chinese underground church. Somehow he thought of saints as being – well, saintly. But Ling was abrupt and rude. He shouted. He complained. He contradicted himself from day to day. On some occasions he seemed simply absent-minded. But at other times he appeared deliberately to be trying to upset people with his contradictions.
I guess that’s what years and years of toil in the underground church does to you, was the best explanation that Daniel could manage. Always on the run from the police. Beaten up and tortured numerous times. Never knowing whom to trust. And then arrested and sent to prison for ten years. Learning while behind bars that his wife had died. Unable to attend her funeral.
And then, when finally he was released, he was sent back here to Fulang, his hometown, and told he could live only here. Exile.
Ling raised his head, though he did not appear to be looking at anyone in particular. “He’s dead,” he muttered. He was speaking in Chinese.
Daniel leaned towards his wife, and translated in a whisper.
“Who’s dead?” she demanded.
“Shh. He hasn’t said yet.”
“Brother Shuei,” said Uncle Ling, as if he had heard. “He’s dead.”
“Brother Shuei?” exclaimed Jenny. “One of our students? What happened?”
“Shh,” said Daniel. “I’m sure he’s about to tell us.”
Uncle Ling pushed a bony hand through his hair. “They dumped his body over the wall of the compound.”
“Who did?” asked Yoon. “When? What’s going on?”
“He’s dead,” repeated Ling. “He’s dead.”
Daniel recalled Brother Shuei. He was an earnest man of about thirty. He came by bicycle every day from a farm at least twenty miles away. He was never late. It was winter when the seminary opened, yet he was always on time, even when snow blanketed the region.
“What is he saying?” asked Jenny.
“They threw him over the wall,” said Ling. “But without one of his arms. They had chopped it off.”
A further excerpt from the book will be published on December 7 at Lorilyn Roberts blog.
About the Author
Martin Roth is a veteran journalist and foreign correspondent whose reports from Asia have appeared in leading publications around the world, including the Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Baltimore Sun and The Guardian. He is the author of many books. His Brother Half Angel international thrillers focus on the persecuted church. They feature Brother Half Angel, an abrasive former military man who heads a clandestine new military order that is dedicated to fighting for the rights of persecuted Christians around the world. He lives in Australia with his Korean wife and three sons.